CIOB - The industry must innovate
In a rare public address Ray O'Rourke chairman of Laing
O'Rourke, part of the consortium that will deliver the London
Olympics in 2012, said construction must continue to innovate.
Speaking at the Chartered Institute of Building's (CIOB) Annual Dinner the private man in charge of Laing O'Rourke said, "Without innovation we are nothing. We cannot bring about change and deliver on the extraordinary challenges we face as an industry - whether it be from ever more imaginative designers, clients and business partners, or from ever more careful scrutiny and regulation - we cannot deliver on any of this without excellence in innovation.
"That restless search for innovation drives everyone at Laing O'Rourke. Radical solutions are demanded by radical thinking. And I have to say that sometimes finding the most innovative solution is often the case of finding the simplest solution.
"I went to Japan last November, and it was an absolute eye-opener. We are not anywhere close to looking after the environment, compared with Japan. I visited a factory where they were employing 500 people as well as using robots and were manufacturing 67,000 homes each year, which is more than the total output of the UK. We have to think differently, keep it simple, but keep it sophisticated."
Roger Flanagan CIOB President said, "We believe new solutions to construction challenges occur only when individuals are inspired to think in new ways and such inspiration must be a primary goal for all professional bodies, government and industry alike. To be a true innovator you have to break trends and lead from the front and that is just one of the reasons why Ray has been awarded the CIOB's President's Medal.